Intrinsically safe tablets and smartphones take mobility into hazardous areas

Paul Boughton

SKF is launching a suite of tablets and smartphones for use in hazardous areas, in industries such as oil and gas, refining, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

Mobile workers will now be able to take this kind of technology, which is often pre-loaded with a host of SKF condition monitoring and productivity apps, into previously inaccessible areas.

SKF, in partnership with ecom, is to launch a whole family of products, peripherals and accessories that are suitable for use in Zone 1/Division 1, Zone 2/Division 2 and harsh environments.

"These tablets offer SKF customers the ability to bring mobility to hazardous areas, using the most modern tools and apps,” says Christoffer Malm, Head of Connectivity Room at SKF. ”The products connect to SKF apps, which in turn connect to SKF knowledge and expertise.”

The products can be supplied as part of SKF Enlight, a package that includes: Data Collect, a powerful app that turns the tablet or smartphone into a data collection device; and WMCD, a special sensor that measures vibration and temperature data. These work well in conjunction with standard tablets and smartphones, but can now also be used in hazardous areas.

Features of the new hazardous area devices include: intrinsic safety, supporting Zone 1/Division 1 and Zone 2/Division 2; Android 4.4; suitable for use with gloves; connectivity via WWAN, 4G LTE* and WLAN, plus NFC technology for wireless applications; 1. 3 Megapixel front camera, 3 Megapixel rear camera with flash, plus barcode scanner; and GPS.